Nate Diaz’s latest legal odyssey is set to kick off after the former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) fighter allegedly choked out a Logan Paul impersonator (a.k.a. Rodney Petersen) during a street fight in last month.
A preliminary court hearing date has been set for June 27, 2023, in New Orleans, Louisiana. Diaz is facing a second-degree battery charge, which is a felony that comes with up to eight years in prison and/or $2,000 in fines. While it’s extremely doubtful that the Stockton, Calif.,-bred fighter will end up spending any significant time in jail, a guilty verdict could certainly make an expected civil suit much more expensive.
Diaz and his teammates got into an altercation with former football player and YouTube celebrity boxer, Chase DeMoor, during Misfits & DAZN: X Series 6, which featured Diaz’s training partner, Chris Avila. After a verbal altercation, video footage showed Diaz throwing a bottle at DeMoor and his team before being escorted out of the event (watch it).
Later that night, DeMoor and Diaz came into contact again outside a New Orleans bar. While details are sketchy as to who started what and why, videos posted to social media show a full-fledged street brawl in effect, with members of Diaz’s team and DeMoor throwing punches until police arrived to quash the chaos.
Diaz can be seen backing away from the incident, but the aforementioned Petersen — who may or may not be a “trained fighter” — made the bad decision to approach him and back him up against a wall. Even with his hands up in an unthreatening manner, Peterson looked like enough of a threat for Diaz to put him in a choke hold, dropping the Influencer to the pavement unconscious “like a basketball.”
Diaz’s legal representative, Zach Rosenfield, called the move self-defense in a statement released to the press.
NEW ANGLE OF NATE DIAZ vs LOGAN PAUL vs CHASE DEMOOR IN NEW ORLEANS #misfits006 #loganpaul #natediaz @HappyPunchPromo pic.twitter.com/Q6wZFbbCTa— OVERT | PJ (@overtflow) April 23, 2023
“Nate’s attorney looks forward to presenting all of the facts about this incident to the District Attorney,” Rosenfield wrote. “Which clearly demonstrate that a trained fighter named Rodney Petersen aggressively pursued Nate with the intention of engaging him and once doing so, Nate acted entirely in self-defense. No further comment will be made at this time.”
Petersen is an experienced Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioner and has participated in YouTuber boxing events in the past. It’s unclear whether he was part of DeMoor’s group that night.
Diaz, 38, will continue his post-UFC career as a professional boxer, making his in-ring debut against social media star Jake Paul. They have history (and I’m using that term loosely) after Diaz clowned one of the Nelk grifters over something not important enough to bother mentioning. Their “sweet science” spectacle is scheduled for Showtime pay-per-view (PPV) on Sat., Aug. 5, 2023, at American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas (details here).
The incident should have no impact on Diaz’s ability to get licensed or compete, other than to serve as a distraction as he likely heads into the biggest payday of his fighting career outside of his two fights against Conor McGregor.
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